Summer of Change VIII

So, we hired a real estate broker last night. Our San Diego house goes on the Multiple Listings System (Site?) (MLS) on July 14th. We’d hoped to get it on the market earlier, but it ain’t gonna happen. Just too many little details left to accomplish.

That weekend – July 15th-17th – is a perfect time, though. Cristina will be moving the dog, cat, and herself to Cottage Grove permanently, and I will be driving a truckload of our stuff (everything but the furniture) up to our new place, then flying back to San Diego on the 17th. The broker will use that weekend to host at least one, if not two open houses. The broker’s attack method is to get as many people in as he can, in as short a period of time as he can, and shoot multiple simultaneous offers. He’s got a very good track record of this so far.

I did quite a bit of research on the agents I chose to interview. The big thing for me was whether or not they new the area and would provide Cristina and me with a realistic range in which to price our house – not some sunshiney greaseball willing to pump sunshine and allow us to list at a price too aggressive for the current market. Nothing will kill a home sale quicker than pricing the property too high.

I had scheduled three interviews, but we only conducted one. The guy we hired was already the frontrunner. A friend of ours (a very difficult to please friend) recommended that we take a look at this guy. He’s been selling houses in Mira Mesa for 35 years, and he enjoys a good reputation for success. Since she recommended him, I put him on the list. The first thing he did was to send me a market comparison report on the house. The other two firms sent me a marketing package. An agent can whip up a market comparison report in about fifteen minutes…so, it’s not huge effort. However, the fact that he sent me data to analyze right off (along with some marketing stuff), while the others just sent me a repackaged version of their web pages, put him at the top of the list. Then, in the interview, he answered some very, very tough questions put to him. I wasn’t mean, but I let him know that we expected some real support from him. He equipped himself very well, outlining some important things that he does right off. And, after I made it clear we were looking at other agents, he gave us a very nice price on his services.

Now, I have to call and cancel the other interviews. I hate that part, though I am sure they are used to it (part of the biz). So, July 14th is the magical date for the listing. Until then, there are a lot of little niggling details that we’ve got to fix. I’m beginning to wonder if that part will ever end.
Pregnancy ends, so I am sure that selling a house ends, too.

Copyright 2005, by Greg Hubbard

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